We are advised that the total number of registered voters in Nad-E-Ali, Helmand Province, Afghanistan, amount to 48,000.
The actual number of votes cast in the main polling station for the Presidential Election was less than 150, and in other areas either a grand total of ONE, or Twenty votes in a late surge!
These votes were counted as being cast despite the Election Monitoring Group fearing to travel to the area, stating that it was too dangerous.
Election officials were seen collating piles of ‘votes’ for Karzai, despite no voters ever coming near the polling booths.
Voting turnout for Helmand is estimated as less than 5%!
The total number of dead British soldiers, not just badly-wounded, amounts to 206.
So every vote cast in the main Panther’s Claw security blanket was worthy just over 1.25 British lives!
The question is, are we getting value for the blood spilt on the desert sands?
OH DEAR, those Americans are an unappreciative lot, what? So unappreciative that their President has flown all the way to Strasbourg in France (until the Huns re-retake it) to chastise his fellow citizens.
Giving it toAmericans straight (via a hall of French and German students), he says
In America, there is a failure to appreciate Europe’s leading role in the world.
You hear that, Americans? You fail to appreciate Europe’s leading role in the world. Start appreciating, you lot over there!
Instead of celebrating your dynamic union and seeking to partner with you to meet common challenges, there have been times where America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive.
And start celebrating our dynamic union, oh yes. And less derisiveness while you’re at it. Now since Strasbourg is where the latest NATO shindig is about to get under way, there has to be a point to all this flannel.
But behind Mr Obama’s charm was a tough message that Europe needed to do more, particularly in Afghanistan where the US is sending 21,000 more troops.
Europe to America: “No We Can’t”
And who can blame them? Afghanistan always will be a horrendous hole. Karzai has just signed a law that legalises rape within marriage and prevents women from leaving their homes without permission.
Is this the ‘nation-building’ for which our soldiers are dying? Aggression against known terrorists is one thing, nation-building is something wholly different and over there it appears increasingly to me that nation-building means ‘reverting to tribal type’.
And where did this mission to build Afghanistan come from? I don’t recall Bush or Blair laying out The Plan to Build Afghanistan – do you? We re-built Germany and Japan following WW2, but that was a fight to the end. There was no suggestion of stopping at their borders; the task was to take their land, crush their regimes and start them anew on civilised terms.
If the same cannot be done in Afghanistan (I don’t think it can) our politicians have no business sending our soldiers there.
As David had posted on the loss of a pet, and the effect it has on family, I shall perhaps turn over a few lumps of grass and dig a little deeper when I also post on five deaths, and how they were treated so very differently by television, the main-stream newspapers, and of course Parliament!
The first death was of course Ivan, the six-year old son of David Cameron. Whilst understanding the terrible grief that the loss of a child can bring, and of course the extra burden of the child being doubly disabled, I wonder why Parliament was suspended, and Prime Minister’s Questions were cancelled, due to the death of one small child? However high in the parliamentary ranks his father may be, life does go on, and notwithstanding the grief of the family, I ask if the reaction was correct? We got the bulletins about how he had lived, how he had suffered and how he had so dramatically died. Was all that really necessary? In proportion to who he was, I question the suitability of the mourning!
I would now turn to the four other deaths; those being Corporal Tom Gaden, Lance Corporal Paul Upton and Rifleman Jamie Gunn. The fourth was that of a Royal Marine, Michael Laski. As Peter Hitchens queries, I also query why all the sombre stuff for a small boy, but nothing, NOTHING, other than a report that four British military lives were lost in Afghanistan.
Why do we never learn? We are going to rebuild a country! Rubbish! When a country with the military might of Russia pulls out of Afghanistan, shouldn’t that serve as a kind of ‘post-it note’? One which says “We aren’t wanted here!”
Our soldiers and marines are being sent out in cheap imitations of military vehicles, so that when the roadside bombs hurl their force into the air, the occupants have no protection; no armour, no aid, no fast helicopter evacuation! Every MP should be forced into all night sittings to discuss every death in Afghanistan, and then they should be forced to go to the family, and explain the reasons why their sons and daughters died. To bring democracy on the cheap to a muslim, drug-ridden, corrupt madhouse?
Bah, a plague on their words of sorrow!
Better a decision to get out as quick as possible, with a warning that the next time some pale imitation of bin Laden speaks up, he’ll get a nuke down his chimney, and to hell with the collateral damage!
Sabra Ahmadzai is a twenty year-old Afghani student and wife, but this is no ordinary Afghan lady. She worked at an Indian hospital in Kabul as an interpreter after learning Hindi from Bollywoood films. She is educated and has come to New Delhi seeking justice for the man who married her bigamously.
Her boss at the hospital, an Indian Army major named Chandrashekhar Pant, proposed marriage, and after he changed his religion to Islam, her mother withdrew her objections and although she herself did not love him, she obeyed her parents and religious advisers, and the marriage took place.
Three weeks later, he said he was being transferred back to India, and some six months later, called her, admitted he already had a wife and two children, and told her to look for another husband. Now this is where it gets a little strange, especially in the context of Afghanistan and India, because this stroppy lady decided to finish her education, got a bank loan, and flew to India demanding justice because she had been betrayed, she was the object of scorn in her neighbourhood, and she wanted to get the erstwhile ‘husband’ up on a rack somewhere for his crime!
Her cause has been adopted by students, she met with government officials and the Commission for Women, decided she was in for the long run, wants to be enrolled at the university and end up with a degree.
Now if all the Afghani women acted like her, we just might see a different face of things in Kabul and elsewhere; good on Sabra!
2009 has got off to a good start. The Hamas infestation in Gaza is being dealt with and now comes the welcome news that Coalition forces in Afghanistan have killed more than 30 terrorists after they were attacked by a large force during a raid on a Taliban roadside bomb cell, the US military has said.
During the battle in the Alishang district of Laghman province, 65 miles north east of the capital Kabul, 32 fighters were killed, including one female and one militant was taken prisoner. “During the operation, as many as 75 armed militants exited their compounds and attempted to converge on the force,” a US spokesman said.
That’s disappointing – the one prisoner being taken, I mean.
No doubt the Human Rights crack brigade will be already starting the campaign to set him free.
Interesting to read that the top hierarchy of al-Qaeda has taken such a hit from US missile strikes that Osama bin Laden and his deputy have had to replace people in the terrorist organisation with men they have never met, according to Western intelligence sources.
A dozen of al-Qaeda’s “senior management” have been killed by Predator drone attacks, which have been so effective in locating their targets that the militant group has been forced to move from traditional outdoor training camps to classroom-style facilities that are hidden from view. After the success of the new weapons, which are unmanned and operate by remote control from 15,000 feet, the United States is to step up its drone attacks. On January 1 Hellfire missiles, operated from an air force base in Nevada, hit targets in the South Waziristan region of Pakistan, close to Afghanistan, and yesterday two missiles slammed into the stronghold where Baitullah Mehsud, the Pakistani Taleban leader, is believed to live. The killings have had a huge impact on the structure, organisation and effectiveness of al-Qaeda, limiting the capacity for commanders to liaise with each other, further separating the top command from the lower ranks and introducing a high degree of uncertainty and a constant awareness of the likelihood of death lurking in the skies.
This is smart tech at its best, wiping out Al Queda scum whilst ensuring US lives are not put at un-necessary risk.
“Make love, not war” has been replaced with make war with love.
“Whatever it takes to make friends and influence people – whether it’s building a school or handing out Viagra,” one veteran CIA officer told The Washington Post. According to the newspaper, pills to boost the libidos of Afghan tribal patriarchs are the latest in a long line of inducements including medicine or operations for family, toys and school equipment, tooth extractions and visas. In one case, a warlord aged 60 who was struggling to satisfy his four younger wives was also holding back information that could be crucial to American interests. A clandestine CIA operatives who was visiting sensed an opportunity and reached into his bag for a small gift of four blue pills. “Take one of these,” he said. “You’ll love it.” Four days later, the CIA man returned to a beaming warlord – whether there were any smiles form his wives was not reported. The warlord furnished the CIA with invaluable details of Taliban supply routes and movements before requesting more pills.”
Mmm….some of the CIA schemes do worry me. It’s all very well to bribe these tribal leaders but their loyalty will last just as long as the next Viagra tablet, and what if Bin Laden and his co-horts up the ante and bribe them with TWO viagra tablets? War is a dirty game and in the final analysis it is fair enough that we do all that is necessary to win. But I can’t help but feel that the CIA tends to get carried away in some of these well-intentioned but perhaps somewhat..ahem..non-sustainable endeavours!
The first item on the news this morning said it all, as far as this observer reasons. Four more young Royal Marines, prime examples of British youth have been sacrificed upon the rather tawdry altar of political expedience, of the shameful and ludicrous idea of ‘Democracy’ in Afghanistan; of the continued propping up of an Afghan government composed of heroin-growing warlords, failed Islamic fundamentalists and of a President whose so-called security forces control less than one tenth of the country he is supposed to be governing.
When the Coalition commenced operations against the Taliban, there was an aura of invincibility surrounding the war, with few things seen to go wrong; few apart that is from the odd friendly fire incident. The Taliban just could not stand against the B-52 bombers, against a massed armoured attack, against a formidable foe such as was fielded by the Coalition forces, and they were speedily dispossessed of power, but then the Coalition seemed to fold, all seeming to agree that it wa a good job well done, and ‘freedom prevails’! So the bloody Taliban, after all the bullets and blood expended to oust them from the damn place, started regrouping and we (the British) were foolish enough to state “We’ll be there” instead of demanding a bombing campaign which would smash the whole place back into the Stone Age from which it had recently crept.
The ludicrous slogans spouted by one John Reid, including the wondrous ‘Not having to fire a single shot in the campaign’, were seen to be somewhat wide of the mark; with one engagement with the Taliban described as ‘The Worst since WW2′. We have so far lost 132 members of our Armed forces in backing up an Islamic Regime which is about as democratic as the average Russian Duma meeting when Putin is present. This regime, into which untold millions have been ploughed in ‘development’, supports the death penalty for apostasy, which for the uninitiated means someone who renounces Islam for summat’ else. This regime, which happily takes the kick-backs from the heroin trade which is aimed at Western veins. This regime, which allegedly gives the votes to women, but then sits back and watches as their silent supporters terrorise women who actually walk outside without a tent enveloping them.
One of the Marines died in a road-side bombing of an ‘Jackal’ armoured vehicle. The fact that the Jackal is known within the British Armed Forces as the ‘Faster Coffin’, as opposed to the ‘Snatch Land Rover’ which has been awarded the title ‘The Slow Coffin’ is but just one of the drawbacks of service within the British Armed forces’ contribution to the debacle in Afghanistan. The succession of totally useless methods of transport chosen by our cost- and politically-obsessed Ministry of Defence is but one of the factors in the true outcome of our totally silly and useless response to the Afghanistan crisis. The other three Marines died when approached by a youngster pushing a wheelbarrow, which then exploded, killing all three. It has been suggested that the bomb was detonated by remote control, and the boy was an innocent victim as well! That does not matter, the Marines shouldn’t have been there! Those wasted lives, piled upon the pyres of a failed ideal, represent yet another paragraph in the death toll of Western involvement in that savage place.
We, along with the rest of the NATO forces should immediately withdraw from Afghanistan, and let that craven bunch of Islamic nit-wits bow down under their favourite fundamentalist governors, but with the firm promise that if there were any more attempts to export their ideals, a short session of Neutron Bombs would settle their places in paradise once and for all!
I’m with the view of US Defense Secretary Robert Gates when he states that Britain’s military commander and ambassador in Afghanistan are being
“defeatist” by thinking the war cannot be won.
The comments by the officials from Britain, a key ally to the United
States in Afghanistan and Iraq, were echoed by the top United Nations
official in Kabul, who said success was only possible through dialogue
and other political efforts. After the invasion of Afghanistan on October 7, 2001 to oust the
fundamentalist Taliban government in the wake of the September 11
attacks on the United States, security has deteriorated markedly over
the past two years. “While we face significant challenges in Afghanistan, there
certainly is no reason to be defeatist or to underestimate the
opportunities to be successful in the long run,” Gates said on Monday
on his way to Europe to meet defense ministers.
But the soft power mentality of the UN rejects the concept of military based victory. It believes that dialogue is the ONLY way to achieve peace and as we see in places like Sudan and Rwanda, that really works, right? The British military at senior level have also been infected by this defeatist contagion, which plays well in the spineless UK media. (The same media which many decades ago urged peace talks with Mr Hitler)
Of course not all British leaders have been so gutless as the current bunch and so I offer you the words of a man who is looked upon by many as THE greatest ever Briton….Sir Winston Churchill on war….
“You ask, what is our policy? I
can say: It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might
and with all the strength that God can give us; to wage war against a
monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark, lamentable catalogue of
human crime. That is our policy. You ask, what is our aim? I can answer
in one word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of
all terror, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without
victory, there is no survival.”
How pathetic to read that Britain’s most senior military commander in Afghanistan has warned that the
war against the Taliban cannot be won.
Brigadier Mark Carleton-Smith said
the British public should not expect a “decisive military victory” but
should be prepared for a possible deal with the Taliban. His assessment followed the leaking of a memo from a French diplomat who
claimed that Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, the British ambassador in Kabul, had
told him the current strategy was “doomed to fail”. Carleton-Smith, commander of 16 Air Assault Brigade, which has just completed
its second tour of Afghanistan, said it was necessary to “lower our
expectations”. He said: “We’re not going to win this war.”
I agree. With people like him in charge, how could we?